May 27, 2024
ICD’s event discusses ways to promote cross-border disruptive financial services
united nations
– By Godswill Odiong

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The Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD) (, a member of the Islamic Development Bank Group (IDBG), organized a side event titled “Role of ICD’s Bridge Platform in Digitalization and Restoring businesses after COVID-19 pandemic” On 3rd September 2021.

ICD objective behind the event was to play a leading role, especially in post-COVID-19 era, in promoting cross-border innovations and financial services that accelerate financial recovery of targeted individuals and SMEs through efficient and swift deployment of emerging trends brought by FinTech key players in sectors such as the “digitization”, “Open Banking”, “Blockchain”, and “Big Data”, “Cloud Services”, and “NeoBanks”.

ICD also aimed to update solution providers and executers with the latest regulations and policy updates. Additionally, ICD also sought valuable recommendations which enable cross-border expansion and solutions, while establishing new businesses and partnerships facilitating restoring of post-COVID resilience and prosperity for all.

Among the issues addressed by the event were: Challenges and opportunities related to FinTech cross-borders’ expansion, efficient and fast deployments of emerging FinTech trends, highlighting Fintech sectors such as “digitization”, “Open Banking”, “Blockchain”, and “Big Data”, “Cloud services”, and “NeoBanks”; in addition to development of new and innovative solutions by FinTech Startups to overcome financial challenges facing individuals and SMEs and new financial regulations recently announced by financial authorities.

In his opening remarks, Mr. Ayman Sejiny, the CEO of ICD, said: “Nowadays, millions of people around the world perform a wide range of financial transactions through their smartphones with no need to visit a bank branch. New financial products and mobile wallets targeting low-income households are emerging in Africa and Asia. Technology is making it possible to do practically any type of financial transactions – savings, payments, lending – in remote villages with the use of smartphones. FinTech can accelerate financial inclusion especially for poor people around the world.”

He also said: “we all must understand and be prepared to embrace disruption and innovation that technology is bringing to our lives”.

He further emphasized the importance of Fintech in meeting the objectives of financial inclusion. “Fintech solutions deliver more efficient outcomes when it compares to separate networks of state institutions and international development organizations. The emerged fintech–based ecosystems accelerate access to finance, expand and monetize digital footprints. Henceforth, the financial inclusion is well served.”

Six FinTech founders and CEOs contributed to this event to highlight their own experiences regarding expansion challenges and opportunities in ICD member countries.

Additionally, the session updated the audience with recent and emerging trends related to digitalization and Blockchain industry towards fostering cross-border expansion for all.

The panellists also addressed how individuals and firms are changing when it comes to saving money, making payments, investing and borrowing, whilst confirming the fact that Fintech solutions currently offered make it possible to do practically any type of financial transaction – savings, payments, financing – in remote villages with the use of smartphones. It is evident that FinTech solutions can encourage cross border financial services with ease and trustworthiness.

At the conclusion of the event, Mr. Sejiny awarded the Winners of its International Financial Innovation Competition titled “ICD’s Finnovation Award 2020 in the presence of many government officials, corporate executives of financial institutions, entrepreneurs FinTechs, businessmen and development practitioners attended the event.

“The Finnovation Award values the ideas, inspiration, and leadership of financial institutions who drive the improvement of the financial industry,” said Mr. Sejiny. “exposing innovative solutions that were successfully implemented in a member country and has the potential to be replicated in other member countries” he added.

The announced winners for 2020 include:

An Innovation solution from Alif Bank of Tajikistan titled “E-wallet, Salom retail loan card”;
An Innovation solution from Maldives Islamic Bank of the Maldives titled “Lifestyle Financing to Meet Consumer Demand”;
An Innovation solution from Bidaya Home Finance of Saudi Arabia titled “Data Driven Marketing Campaigns”;
An Innovation solution from Green Delta Capital Limited of Bangladesh titled “GD Planner”; and
An Innovation solution from Wifak International Bank of Tunisia titled “The Card Plus and the Salary ++ Card”.
These innovations deserved high distinction and award as they encourage other financial institutions to envisage innovation as a prime engine for growth and sustainability, in a rapidly changing age.

This award is introduced and sponsored by ICD to continue its support toward the growth and sustainability of the financial industry with an aim to collaborate in delivering development goals and objectives. ICD encourages all financial institutions with highly distinguished innovations to participate in the 2nd edition of ICD’s global Finnovation Award which will be launched in Q4 2021. For more information, please visit the Finnovation Award website at

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